An American in Paris

Synopsis: Jerry Mulligan, a struggling American painter in Paris, is "discovered" by an influential heiress with an interest in more than Jerry's art. Jerry in turn falls for Lise, a young French girl already engaged to a cabaret singer. Jerry jokes, sings and dances with his best friend, an acerbic would-be concert pianist, while romantic complications abound.
Director(s): Vincente Minnelli
Production: MGM
  Won 6 Oscars. Another 4 wins & 7 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
114 min

This is Paris.

And I'm an American

who lives here.

My name, Jerry Mulligan...

... and I'm an ex-G.I.

In 1945, when the Army

told me to find my own job...

... I stayed on.

And I'll tell you why.

I'm a painter.

All my life that's all

I've ever wanted to do.

For a painter,

the mecca of the world for study...

... for inspiration and for living...

... is here on this star called Paris.

Just look at it.

No wonder so many artists

have come here and called it home.

Brother, if you can't paint in Paris,

give up and marry the boss' daughter.

We're on the Left Bank now.

That's where I'm billeted.

Here's my street.

In the past couple of years...

... I've gotten to know

practically everyone on the block.

And a nicer bunch

you'll never meet.

Back home everyone

said I didn't have any talent.

They might be saying

the same thing over here...

... but it sounds better in French.

I live upstairs.

No, not there.

One flight up.


Those are three of my pals.

Etienne, Maurice and Jacques.

I'm their man because

I give them American bubble gum.

I have a lot of

good friends in Paris.

A lot of very good friends.

And I am one of them.

Adam Cook is my name.

I'm a concert pianist.

That's a pretentious way of

saying I'm unemployed at the moment.

I live in the same brick pile

with young Rembrandt.

That's not me.

He's too happy.

I'm here on a scholarship.

Last year, I won the Hackenwall prize

and was sent abroad to study.

That's the eighth fellowship I've won.

And you know something?

I'm getting pretty homesick.

Not only that, but I'm beginning to feel

like the world's oldest child prodigy.

One time I ran out of fellowships

and had to go to work for a living.

I had to stop because

I discovered I liked it...

... and I didn't want to become

a slave to the habit.

It's not a pretty face, I grant you.

But underneath its flabby exterior

is an enormous lack of character.

I like Paris.

It's a place where you don't

run into old friends.

Although that's never

been one of my problems.

Strangely enough, I made a friend

over here once. I worked for him.

His name was Henri Baurel.

You know, the French music hall star?

Do you remember him?

I do, because that's me.

Adam was a fine accompanist.

I wish he were still with me.

My, how nice to be

in the old quarter!

You see?

Everybody recognizes me.

I guess I haven't changed

so much after all.

They've known me a long time.

But now, don't misunderstand.

I don't mean

to imply that I am old.

I'm not.

After all, I am only...

Well, what's the difference?

No, that's not me.

I am not that young.

Let's just say...

... I am old enough to know what to do

with my young feelings.


- Georges!

- Henri Baurel!

- Henri!

- Mathilde!


You used to

sing it a tone higher.

I'm a big boy now.

My voice is changing.

- Shall I come up?

- No, I'll be right down.

Hey, Georges,

some coffee!

Henri, I'm going to

make you an "omelette la confiture".

Don't kiss me.

You'll spoil my makeup.

You look great, Hank.

What're you doing?

Taking injections?

Something much better.

I hear your show's a big hit.

It is, "naturellement".

- When did you get over?

- Last March.

I phoned you,

but there was no answer.

I'd have phoned again, but I was

afraid you might be in.

March? I wasn't in Paris then.

Lise and I were

visiting friends in Juan-les-Pins.

- Some coffee, please.

- What are you working on?

- Same old concert.

- When will you give it?

When I can't figure out

any more reasons not to.

Some coffee, please.

I took Lise to hear

Weingarten play the other night.

It was her first concert,

and her eyes were shining two days.

Why didn't you take her to an eye

doctor? Incidentally, who's Lise?

That's the second time

that name has come up.

Adam, I am very happy these days.

I'll show you her picture.

- Are you married?

- Not yet.

Pretty. Very pretty.

- She looks familiar.

- She's Jacques Bouvier's daughter.

Jacques Bouvier?

My coffee.

Poor Jacques.

He was caught in the Resistance.

I took care of Lise all through

the occupation. She lived in my house.

Your house?

Shocking, but generous.

She was a little girl then.

We only became

in love after she left.

She's a little young for you,

isn't she?

No, not really. She's 19.

She's getting on.

What's she like?

Well, she has great vitality

and "joie de vivre".

She loves to go out, have fun and

dance. She could dance all night.

Sounds tiresome.

Kind of a wild kid, huh?


Whatever gave you that idea?

No, she's very simple.

Very simple.

She works all day at the

Maison Nicole, the perfume shop.

I prefer not to

discuss the matter any further.

Be serious.

She's an enchanting girl, Adam.

Not really beautiful,

and yet, she has great beauty.

Very spiritual type, huh?

Not at all.

She's an exciting girl, Adam.

She seems to be

a lusty young lady.

No! She's sweet and shy.

An old-fashioned girl, huh?

Course not!

She's vivacious and modern.

Always yakking it up?

Don't be silly!

She reads incessantly.

Doesn't all that reading

make her moody?


She's the gayest girl in the world.

Look, let's start

all over again, shall we?

What's she like?

Good morning, Therese.

How are you today, "monsieur"?

I could be better, Therese.

I'm broke.

- Broke?

- That means I have no money.

When I'm broke I don't eat.

Rate this script:5.0 / 2 votes

Alan Jay Lerner

Alan Jay Lerner (August 31, 1918 – June 14, 1986) was an American lyricist and librettist. In collaboration with Frederick Loewe, and later Burton Lane, he created some of the world's most popular and enduring works of musical theatre both for the stage and on film. He won three Tony Awards and three Academy Awards, among other honors. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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